This story is from a few weeks ago. I just got a chance now to look into the implications for Bigfoot research. It is, shall we say, another section of the Sasquatch evidence house of cards that has crumbled.
Scientists have discovered that about one in thirteen people have flexible ape-like feet.
A team studied the feet of 398 visitors to the Boston Museum of Science.
The results show differences in foot bone structure similar to those seen in fossils of a member of the human lineage from two million years ago.
Jeremy DeSilva from Boston University and a colleague asked the museum visitors to walk barefoot and observed how they walked by using a mechanised carpet that was able to analyse several components of the foot.
And what he found showed that a significant number of humans have this trait. Very curious. But this puts Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum, Idaho State University professor and Bigfoot expert, in an interesting position. He has stated, and published that Sasquatch/Bigfoot prints frequently show a mid-tarsal break and this is indicative of the prints NOT being human:
Perhaps the most significant observation relating to this trackway was the evidence of a pronounced flexibility in the midtarsal joint. Several examples of midfoot pressure ridges indicate a greater range of flexion at the transverse tarsal joint than permitted in the normal human tarsus. This is especially manifest in the footprint figured below, in which a heel impression is absent. Evidently, the hindfoot was elevated at the time of contact by the midfoot. Due to the muddy conditions, the foot slipped backward, as indicated by the toe slide-ins, and a ridge of mud was pushed up behind the midtarsal region.
Here is another published paper [PDF]
Meldrum has to revise his ideas now. This is how science works. What does this mean for Bigfoot evidence. Well, it weakens it just a bit more. After all these years, in normal science progress, the support for a theory should be getting better. We do not see that in Bigfoot research. The cards just continue to fall.
I also caught sight of this article today with Meldrum saying the evidence points to its existence. Sadly, no. The evidence is weak and the GOOD evidence that is STILL missing is damning. It will be interesting to see how Dr. Meldrum responds. However, he is embarking on the ambitious Falcon Project to continue his search.
Addition: It has already been determined that FAKE feet can make prints with an apparent midtarsal ridge.
Tip: Jeb Card